A few weeks ago, we were invited to visit Easter Seals to learn all about the wonderful programs they execute every day. Not only do they make a life-changing impact on families and kiddos across the country every day, the Columbus chapter puts on a fantastic annual event. “Romancing the Grape is Central Ohio’s premier wine and food tasting event featuring more than 100 varieties of wine as well as hors d’oeuvres from Columbus’ finest local restaurants. The event features live entertainment and a silent auction featuring sports memorabilia, family outings and other unique items and experiences. Annually the event attracts more than 650 guests.” Sounds like our kind of event.
Along with some of our favorite Columbus bloggers, we received an after-hours tour of the Easter Seals facility over in Hilliard. If you aren’t familiar with this great organization, they provide services such as education and therapy, daily use of a fully accessible play yard, individual family service plans and so much more. At our tour, we really learned about the wonders that they do with kiddos 18-36 months old, like letting them enjoy this amazing ball pit.
I’m not sure if it’s because I have a little peanut of my own now, but I am just so thankful that these organizations exist for families in need. A wonderful little lady came to our meeting and her Mom shared her story with our group. She has now graduated on to her local elementary school but without Easter Seals helping her during the transition, she said she wouldn’t have been ready. It’s stories like hers who make me take a step back everyday and not sweat the small stuff. I love a great non-profit organization as much as the next gal, but this one is truly fantastic. While we mostly learned about how they help children with developmental and physical disabilities, Easter Seals does so much more. Their primary programs in Central Ohio are Adult Day and In-Home Care, Discovery Garden, Dolly Parton Imagination Library, Summer Day Camp and Vocational Services. If you’d like to learn how to get more involved, check out their contact info here.
Now that you know all about the wonders of Easter Seals, I have to tell you about their upcoming event, Romancing the Grape! Act quick because tickets are $15 off until April 1st and then they jump up to $100. In addition to proceeds benefitting this wonderful group, you’ll get to take part in a killer wine and food event at Ohio Stadium. I actually worked at this event a few years ago on behalf of Whole Foods Market. It. was. amazing. So much fun and so much wine. You’ll never love drinking for a good cause more than you will at this event. Since this event is all about grapes (and Easter Seals), we figured we’d write up a fun recipe focused on this versatile little fruit. I hope you don’t think grapes are just for eating plain ol’ jane from the fridge! These babies are going to get taken up a notch and then served with some turkey burgers. Yum. Obviously, we used our cast iron skillet to roast our grapes. While I would definitely suggest this. You can definitely use a sheet pan but make sure you line it with some parchment paper before tossing it in the oven. We tested two variations of the smooshed burgers. One had the chopped spinach in them and the other, we just added on top of the finished burger. I suggest adding the chopped spinach to the mixture, it just helps get a little bit more of that flavor in there.
We made this little quarter pound patties with Simple Truth Ground Turkey, but you could easily swap out ground beef if you have that on hand instead. As with any pattie mixture, make sure not to overmix! That is how you create tough meatballs and patties. You just need to combine it enough that the ingredients are fully incorporated.
So, I actually ate my turkey burger with some giant lettuce leaves. I believe they were Boston lettuce, but you could romaine, iceberg (bleh), gem or really anything that will stay together and fully cover the turkey burger. If you use a bun, I suggest using one that is smaller because you don’t want to take away the flavor of the actual dish. We also topped ours with some more fresh spinach and crumbled feta and of course the roasted grapes!
While these turkey burgers won’t make an appearance at Romancing The Grape, we sure will. An even better reason to grab a ticket now before the price jumps a bit. See you there!
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 4-6 leaves fresh spinach, chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta
- 1 cup red grapes
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- spinach, to top burger
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Toss grapes in balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Roast in cast iron skillet for 30 minutes, stopping every 10 minutes to shake pan. Remove pan from oven and set aside when finished.
- While grapes are roasting, mix turkey, feta, spinach, salt and pepper together until fully combined. Form into 4 equal patties.
- Heat pan over medium heat and add four patties, cooking each side for 5 minutes until internal temperature is 165 degrees F.
- Serve burgers with feta, spinach, and roasted grapes.
- If you have leftover roasted grapes, they make a wonderful addition to a salad!